ADBR managing editor Andrew McLaughlin has won the Australasian Aviation Press Club (AAPC) journalist of the year award for a second straight year.
It was a night of triple celebration for McLaughlin, who also took out the defence story of the year and the technical story of the year categories at the 2019 awards presentation that was held in Sydney on November 29.
The judges said McLaughlin was a deserving back-to-back winner in 2019 for his in-depth, well-researched and well-written submissions across the defence sector over the past year.
“I don’t know what to say,” McLaughlin said in his acceptance speech. “It’s been a wild ride the last year or two and I am looking forward to next year.”
McLaughlin’s winning defence story of the year was a close look at the Royal Australian Air Force’s (RAAF) F-35 outpost in the United States at the Luke Air Force base in Arizona.
Meanwhile, his feature on the massive amount of data collected by the F-35, as the RAAF was worked to fully integrate the fifth-generation all-digital aircraft in its fleet, was judged the technical story of the year.
Aviation Week senior air transport editor Adrian Schofield was runner up in the aviation journalist of the year category.
The judges said Schofield turned in some great stories spanning commercial and defence aviation in both Australia and New Zealand over the past 12 months.
The pair beat out Grant Bradley, Jamie Freed and Owen Zupp, who were the other three finalists for the evening’s top honour.
Thanks to everyone for supporting my writings and ramblings. 🙂 And congratulations to my mate, Andrew McLaughlin for taking out the title! pic.twitter.com/6vd0r1AOGd
— Owen Zupp. Author. (@owenzupp) November 30, 2019
Among the other awards, the Australian’s Robyn Ironside took out the Australian aviation news story of the year for her article about Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce’s remarks on climate change and how increased taxes on airlines could negatively impact the industry.
“I feel very honoured. I know these awards are very highly contested,” Ironside said. “I feel very flattered. Thank you.”
Steve Creedy from Airline Ratings was named runner up in this category for his story about the ongoing search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370.
The New Zealand aviation news story of the year winner was Grant Bradley from The New Zealand Herald for his report on the concerns among some younger Air New Zealand pilots regarding career progression.
“Thanks to the people in airlines, the corporate comms people, who make our lives easier at times, and sometimes more difficult,” Bradley said. “Cheers to you all. Thanks.”
Jamie Freed from Thomson Reuters took out the runner up prize for her story about diversity in the aviation industry featuring an interview with now former Air New Zealand chief executive Christopher Luxon.
Bradley also won the aviation multimedia story of the year award for his first-person account travelling on Singapore Airlines’ nonstop Singapore-New York Newark flight.
The judges said the story was more than just a thorough recap of the flight and a fantastic piece of multimedia journalism that included video, interviews, graphics and photos.
Australian Aviation contributor Denise McNabb’s first-person account of the Moon landing in 1969 was runner up in this category.
Honoured and stoked to win the NZ news story of the year and multi media story of the year at Australasian Aviation Press Club awards in Sydney last night. Congrats to other winners. pic.twitter.com/f7sUdyIzSq
— grant bradley (@gbradleynz) November 29, 2019
Meanwhile, the aviation feature story of the year was judged to be Orient Aviation chief correspondent and Australian Aviation contributor Tom Ballantyne’s in-depth look at low-cost carriers (LCC) in the Asia Pacific region.
Ballantyne thanked Airbus and the judges for this award.
“This, I must admit is a surprise,” Ballantyne said. “Looking at the low-cost market, we all know how that’s changed the landscape over the past few years.”
Australian Aviation contributor Owen Zupp was runner up in this category for his story about the challenges of flying into the icy continent of Antartica.
And Mark Jessop from Australian Aviation was judged aviation photographer of the year ahead of Australian Aviation contributor Seth Jaworski.
Full list of winners:
Aviation journalist of the year (sponsored by Airservices Australia and Cathay Pacific)
Winner: Andrew McLaughlin, ADBR
Runner-up: Adrian Schofield, Aviation Week
Aviation photographer of the year (sponsored by Singapore Airlines)
Winner: Mark Jessop, Australian Aviation
Runner-up: Seth Jaworski, Australian Aviation
Australian aviation news story (sponsored by Perth Airport)
Winner: Robyn Ironside, The Australian – Qantas boss Alan Joyce warns climate hysteria threatens air travel
Runner-up: Steve Creedy, Airline Ratings – MH370: Independent experts uncover potential search area
New Zealand aviation news story (sponsored by AAPC)
Winner: Grant Bradley, The New Zealand Herald – Friction on the flight deck
Runner-up: Jamie Freed, Thomson Reuters – A year after Qatar boss’ gaffe, airlines still pay ‘lip service to diversity – executives
Aviation feature story (sponsored by Airbus)
Winner: Tom Ballantyne, Australian Aviation – Lions and Dragons: There’s fire and ice in the low-cost jungle
Runner-up: Owen Zupp, Australian Aviation – Frozen in time
Aviation defence story (sponsored by Boeing)
Winner: Andrew McLaughlin, ADBR –Luke Days
Runner-up: Owen Zupp, Australian Aviation – HATS Off
Aviation technical story (sponsored by GE Aviation)
Winner: Andrew McLaughlin, ADBR – Building Data – Inside the RAAF’s F-35 mission data programming capability
Runner-up: Nigel Pittaway, Aerospace Testing International – Without Wires
Aviation multimedia story (sponsored by Air New Zealand)
Winner: Grant Bradley, The New Zealand Herald – Live from 37,000 feet on board the world’s longest flight
Runner-up: Denise McNabb, Australian Aviation – Remembering the Apollo 11 Moon landing 50 years on
[vc_gallery interval=”0″ images=”79542,79548,79549,79544,79545,79550″ img_size=”750×420″ title=”A look at the 2019 AAPC awards dinner. (Photography by Seth Jaworski)”]